Nifty Outlook Calendar Shortcuts for Setting Appointments
Does this sound familiar?
You: Let’s touch base six weeks after Christmas and go from there.
Client: Sounds great. What date is that?
You: Uhhh…let me look at my calendar.
You then scroll to the reference point (Christmas) and count six weeks out to find the date. All the while, your client is waiting for a response so they can move on to the next task in their busy day. Save yourself, your clients’, and your coworkers’ time by using one of these shortcuts to set calendar events.
Outlook Calendar Shortcut 1: Use Natural Language to Determine a Calendar Date
Start by opening a new appointment in your calendar. You can either select the New Appointment button on the ribbon or press Ctrl+N on your keyboard. Instead of clicking the dropdown menu and navigating to the correct date, simply type a description of the date you want in the Start time field. For example, you can use numerical instructions like “4 days” or “3 weeks.” Once you press Enter on your keyboard, the date will automatically populate.
In the example dialogue, the date you’re looking for references Christmas. Enter “6 weeks after Christmas” to find the correct date.
Microsoft Outlook Calendar recognizes many natural language phrases such as “day,” “week,” “month,” “year,” “today,” “next week,” “day after tomorrow,” “one month from yesterday,” etc.
Outlook Calendar Shortcut 2: Use Outlook Calendar Abbreviations for Making Appointments
Further reduce how much you type by abbreviating.
For example, Outlook 2013 will recognize “five weeks from tomorrow,” but it can also be entered as “5w 1d” or “5w+1d.” Similarly, abbreviate month with “m” and year with “y.” You can even use a reference point for setting dates. So, again in the example we’ve been using, the abbreviation “12/25 6w” would also work.
Both of these tips are great if you have a fixed date. If you need to select from multiple options, our tip on sharing your calendar, even with external folks, may alleviate your scheduling woes.
Discover More Outlook Shortcuts with These Resources!
A version of this “how to” on using natural language with your calendar originally appeared in Microassist’s Training News, our monthly newsletter on productivity tips and trends and upcoming classes. To subscribe to Training News via text, fill out the form below.
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